How To Use Social Media to Buy and Sell Real Estate
This post is a bit of a departure from previous posts but continue the theme of DIY in real estate. Ohio, West Virginia, Pennsylvania, and rural America are no strangers to the growth of social media. This post explores using social media to assist in the purchase or sale of real estate.
As social media has evolved from a purely social tool to one that’s often used to promote business interests, more and more people use Facebook, Twitter, YouTube, and other social media channels to buy and sell big-ticket items, including real estate. While social media can help you find your dream house or market your current property, it does require a strategy beyond just friending and tweeting indiscriminately. Here are some ideas that will help you develop a coherent strategy for using social media to buy and sell your property:
Part of making a wise home-buying decision is to arm yourself with plenty of information. The first set of information you should obtain is information about the surrounding area. Social media platforms like Facebook have created a virtual six degrees of separation where you can connect with people in your target area though no more than five intermediaries. Whether you’re looking to move to a different part of the country or a different part of the city, Facebook is a great way learn all you’ll ever want to know about a particular area from people who actually live there. There are also neighborhood-related websites that can provide a wealth of information about the area where your potential new home is located.
Once you’ve narrowed down where you want to buy, you can use social media to find individual properties in those areas. In addition to real estate agent’s social media pages, you can find FSBO (For Sale By Owner) properties by using the search feature of the social platform you’re on. The most popular social media sites for real estate are Facebook, Twitter, YouTube, and Instagram.
As you find properties on social media that match your basic criteria, you can drill down for even more information about the property by checking Zillow.com. You can even check FSBO properties there.
If you’re selling a property yourself, the best thing to do is learn what professional real estate people do, and what they don’t do. That starts with a dedicated page on whichever social media sites you choose. As we previously mentioned, Facebook, Twitter, YouTube, and Instagram are the most commonly used social media platforms for marketing real estate. So you should create a dedicated page or channel on each of these platforms for maximum reach. On Facebook, that means creating a business page from your personal account page. On the other three, it means creating a new account or channel rather than using your personal account to market your property. This keeps your personal information and posts private. It also makes it easier for prospective buyers to focus on the property for sale rather than having to wade through your personal posts to find property information.
Your first post on the various platforms should be a virtual tour of the property. Creating a virtual tour is easier than you might think, so don’t be intimidated by the idea. Ideally, you should pin your tour video to the top of your Facebook page and Twitter feed. As for your YouTube channel and Instagram page, your virtual tour should be the only thing you post there, so it will always be on top.
In addition to having a social media presence for your property, as you publish ongoing posts to your Facebook and Twitter pages, you can include a link to your online listing. Having a listing on an agent’s website is one more way for prospective buyers to find your property online.
Buying and selling real estate is serious business, whether you’re a real estate professional or selling your own home. By understanding how to use social media in real estate, you’ll be able to develop a coherent strategy that will make the buying and selling process less stressful and more successful.
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